Michael Carliner                              Links
Housing Economist
Census Bureau Housing and Demographic Data

A to Z Index

Construction Data (Permits, Starts, Sales, Value Put-In-Place, Prices)

Housing Data (Vacancies, Absorption, American Housing Survey)

American Community Survey  Ongoing large-sample collection of population and housing data previously
included in decennial census long form.

Current Population Survey Monthly survey (with annual demographic supplement) used to produce
unemployment rates, household estimates, homeownership, migration, etc.

Historical Decennial Census (Reports from 1790 to 2000)

DataFerret tool for accessing and tabulating microdata

IPUMS from Minnesota Population Center provides Census Bureau microdata, including the ACS,  CPS back to
1962, and decennial censuses back to 1850!  It's easier than raw data files, but not for the faint of heart.

American Factfinder access pre-formatted tables from decennial, ACS, and Economic Census.

Demographics (other than Census Bureau)

Dept of Homeland Security Immigration Statistics Note that DHS doesn’t count people based on when they
arrive, but on when they become classified as legal immigrants, etc.

National Center for Health Statistics-Vital Statistics Births, deaths, etc. with extensive detail.  Marriage and
divorce data are there too, but since 1996 have been cut back and don’t include all states.

IRS Migration Data Address changes for taxpayers are a key input to Census population estimates.  There is
additional detail, and caveats ignored by Census, here.

Population Reference Bureau Private non-profit

House Prices

FHFA House Price Index  (formerly OFHEO) Repeat-sale national-state-metro quarterly (and some monthly)
data based on GSE loan records

Freddie Mac House Price Index (FMHPI), Repeat-sales index using essentially same data, with slightly different
methodology, as FHFA

S&P Case-Shiller Indices Repeat-sale, monthly, for 20 metros, based on sales

National Association of Realtors Existing home median, average prices, also existing home sales (closings) and
pending home sales (contracts)

New Home Prices and Sales from Census Bureau.  Hedonic price indices (adjusted for changes in new home
characteristics) are based on the same new home sales data.

Coldwell-Banker estimated cost of “middle management” home in different local areas

Zillow.com  Free online automated appraisals, and Home Value Index

Marshall and Swift Construction Cost Data (part of CoreLogic)

R.S. Means Construction Cost Data  (part of Reed Construction)

Pulsenomics conducts a survey of economists' house price expectations , based on Zillow index

Housing Finance

CoreLogic has data based on public records and servicing portfolios regarding home sales, foreclosures,
negative equity, "shadow inventory" and other good (or, sad but relevant) stuff, much of which is shown in
public-available reports

Freddie Mac Economic Research, including weekly mortgage rate survey, refi data, and ARM shares

Fannie Mae economic analyses and survey reports

FHA Data from HUD include Single-Family Origination Trends, Monthly Production Report (including multifamily)
Loan Performance Trends

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Industry Analysis

Federal Housing Finance Agency Monthly Interest Rate Survey with loan characteristics

Flow of Funds data from Federal Reserve shows outstanding debt and home equity.  Note that household
ownership of rental real estate is counted under nonfinancial noncorporate business, rather than in household
real estate assets and mortgage debt.  The Federal Reserve also conducts a quarterly
Senior Loan Officers
Opinion Survey that measures whether home mortgage lending (and other lending) is being tightened or

Hope Now , an alliance of mortgage industry firms, provides
data on foreclosures and loan modifications

LPS (Lender Processing Services) Applied Analytics includes McDash Loan Data, and yet another set of house
price indices

Mortgage Bankers Association Delinquency and other surveys, commentary, etc (some free).  Sponsors the
Research Institute for Housing America, which produces reports and provides links.

Mortgage Metrics report from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

RealtyTrac  measures of foreclosure activity

Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data is available from  the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council
and the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

U.S. Mortgage Insurers, (successor to Mortgage Insurance Companies of America) is a trade association for
private mortgage insurance.


National Association of Home Builders Economic and Housing Data, Analysis

Toolbase technical information from NAHB Research Center

Builder Magazine Online version of Hanley-Wood magazine for Builders.  

Housingzone Online information from Professional Builder, the other major trade magazine for builders

NIST (Dept of Commerce, Nat Inst of Standards and Technology) Construction Information, including fire issues.

Manufactured Housing Institute They prefer that you don't call them mobile homes.  

Homebuilders.com Directory of builders

Real Estate

National Association of Realtors tracks existing home sales, conducts surveys, etc.  Its Institute of Real Estate
conducts surveys of rental property operating costs

National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries measures returns on real estate investments

MIT Center for Real Estate has indices of property values for rental housing and commercial real estate

National Multi Housing Council looks at apartment trends and tracks largest rental property owners and
managers, but access to most material restricted to members.

Building Materials

APA – Engineered Wood Association: OSB, I-joists, etc.  (APA used to stand for American Plywood Association,
until they found that wasn’t the wave of the future.)  

CME Lumber Futures Prices.  This provides a signal of trends in lumber prices.  Futures can be used to hedge
against risk, as explained in
my 1994 article, if used prudently.

Portland Cement Association Economic Research

Random Lengths – the premier source for data on lumber prices and wood markets. They don’t give out a lot
for free, but a few statistics may be found here.

U.S. Forest Service, acts like wood supply is no longer of interest. Home page doesn't feature reports from
Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974
(RPA)  or from  Forest Products Laboratory

U.S. Geological Survey – includes information on cement, aggregates, gypsum, copper, iron and steel.  

Housing Policy - Private Non-profits, Think Tanks, Advocates

American Dream Coalition Right-of-center perspectives on housing policy

Brookings Institution Housing Page

Urban Institute Housing Page

Joint Center for Housing Studies Harvard University

National Low Income Housing Coalition produces various reports including periodic "Out of Reach" reports on
affordability and provides links to various state-level reports

National Housing Institute Left-of-center perspectives from New Jersey-based organization, including quarterly
Shelterforce publication

National Housing Preservation Database tracks public and assisted housing

Local Initiatives Support Corporation helps local non-profit developers

National Housing Conference and its Center for Housing Policy offer policy-related research

National Economic Data

President’s Council of Economic Advisors

Economic Indicators – Monthly Compendium prepared by Council of Economic Advisors for Joint Economic

Bureau of Economic Analysis (Dept of Commerce) GDP and Other Data

BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Home Page - Employment, Prices, Wages

Federal Reserve Economic Research and Data – Industrial Production, Flow of Funds, Interest Rates

State and Local Data

Building permits for states, metros, counties, and 20,000 individual permit-issuing jurisdictions (about half of
which report monthly)

BLS State and County employment by industry from Quarterly “Census” of Employment and Wages, based
mainly on unemployment insurance records from state agencies.

County Business Patterns Establishments and employees by industry.  Industry classifications are probably
more consistent across states than alternative data from BLS.  Some data are available by zip code.

Unemployment Insurance Claims Dept of Labor

USPS Vacancy Data provided by HUD--an interesting initiative with quarterly census tract data, but vacancies
are not measured consistently in different localities

HUD Comprehensive Housing Market Analysis for selected metro areas

Library of Congress Links to state and local governments

State Data Centers connected to U.S. Census Bureau

Association for University Business and Economic Researchers  Look for links under "Member Search"

State Energy Data System from Department of Energy

National Center for Education Statistics Data on enrollment, etc.

Bureau of Transportation Statistics Includes information on transit, commuting and other household travel

See also links under prices, demographics, etc.


World Bank Data and Statistics

OECD  (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) - look under "OECD.Stat Extracts"

United Nations Statistics Division

CIA World Factbook

IMF International Monetary Fund - their "World Economic Outlook" is particularly notable and free

Bank for International Settlements includes various studies and data related to banking, housing finance, and
housing, including
property prices for some countries

Global Property Guide – Surprisingly good portal to house price data

University of Toronto Links to US and International Statistics

European Mortgage Federation produces annual Hypostat report on housing and mortgage markets in Europe

CECODHAS European public, cooperative and social housing

Meta Sites

Resources for Economists (sponsored by American Economics Assn)

NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research) Links for other sources for economists

AREUEA (American Real Estate and Urban Economics Assn) Links

Fedstats – Links to data from federal government

Data.gov  A site "to increase public access to high value, machine readable datasets generated by the
Executive Branch of the Federal Government."  Another useful site is the
Federal Digital System from the
Government Printing Office, with links to various government publication such as the Federal Register and
Congressional Record


Fed In Print - Search engine maintained by FRB San Francisco monitors reports from throughout Federal
Reserve system

Federal Reserve Archival System for Economic Research (FRASER) from Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis,
has historical documents and data, not limited to Fed reports.

NOAA Climate at a Glance – Monthly temperature & precipitation

HUDUSER Portal to all data, research, publications from HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research